EFCC Release: Two Lebanese Convicted Over $2.07m Bulk Cash Smuggling

Hassan Rmaiti and Talal Hammoud
By Wilson Uwujaren- Ag. Head, Media & Publicity

Two Lebanese, Hassan Rmaiti and Talal Hammoud who were arrested at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport, Lagos on November 26, 2012 with $2,073,160 (Two Million, Seventy Three Thousand, One Hundred and Sixty Dollars) have been convicted by Justice Okechukwu Okeke of the Federal High Court sitting in Lagos.

While Hassan Rmaiti was arrested with $1,971,920 (One Million, Nine Hundred and Seventy One Thousand, Nine Hundred and Twenty Dollars) Talal Hammoud was caught with $101,240.00 (One Hundred and One Thousand, Two Hundred and Forty Dollars). The convicts were on their way to Lebanon when they were arrested for failure to declare the money to Customs at the airport as required under section 12 of the foreign exchange (Monitoring and Miscellaneous Provision) Act cap F34 Laws of the Federation of Nigerian 2004 and section 2(3) of the Money Laundering (prohibition) Act, 2011.  The  offence is punishable under section 2(5) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011.

The one count charge against Hammoud reads: “That you Talal Hammoud on or about the 7th of November, 2012 at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport, Lagos within the jurisdiction of the Federal High Court while transporting in cash the sum of  $101,240.00 (one hundred and one thousand two hundred and forty Dollars) from Nigeria to Lebanon failed to declare to the Nigerian Customs Service the said amount of $101,240.00 (one hundred and one thousand two hundred and forty Dollars) as required under section 12 of the foreign exchange (Monitoring and Miscellaneous Provision) Act cap F34 Laws of the Federation of Nigerian 2004 and section 2(3) of the Money Laundering (prohibition) Act, 2011 and thereby committed an offence punishable under section 2(5) of the Money Laundering (Pr0hibition) Act ) 2011”.

One of the two count charge against Rmaiti reads “That you HASSAN RMAITI on or about the 23rd of November 2012 at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport, Lagos within the jurisdiction of this federal high court while transporting in cash the sum of $1,971,920 (One Million, Nine Hundred and Seventy One Thousand, Nine Hundred and Twenty Dollars) form Nigeria to Lebanon failed to declare the said sum of $1,971,920 (One Million, Nine Hundred and Seventy One Thousand, Nine Hundred and Twenty Dollars), to the Nigerian Custom Services as required under section 12 of the Foreign Exchange (Monitoring and Miscellaneous Provisions) Act cap F34 Laws of the federation of Nigeria 2004 and section 2 (3) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act, 2011 and thereby committed an offence punishable under section 2(5) of the Money Laundering (prohibition) Act 2011”.
When the charges were read to the accused persons, they all pleaded guilty.

Based on their plea, prosecuting counsel, ABC Ozioko prayed the court to convict them. Defence counsel, Chris Emeh however pleaded with the court for leniency as the accused persons were first-time offenders.

Justice Okeke accordingly convicted the accused and ordered that they forfeit $25,310 (Twenty Five Thousand Three Hundred and Ten Dollars), being 25% of the undeclared sum to the Federal Government of Nigeria.
Wilson Uwujaren
 

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Lebanese Convicted

Really? SR you wrote this type of article? Wow

labanies

wow!!! Nigeria get money,u see people that love their country not mr G,S,R,M and the oga is mr P.

What a poor report.Simple

What a poor report.Simple basics of the story missing. What were each of the convicted sentenced to?

25%

Just want to make some correction,for I am not intrested of the Judge's ruling nor the Lebanese that are involved.

The actual 25% of the total amount as posted is $518290 not mere $25310.

Please who ever is involved in writing this piece should try to correct this very big error. Thank you

You are the pessimist...but why...?

People like you are those that spoil this nation because you always pray negatively...and surely you will see the consequences of your pray...if you must have a religion...by God grace naija go better...im optimistic about that

@ Oleku

Please, do not talk like an iliterate fool. Get your facts right before you speak. You such a bad influence and image on Nigeria! Haba...

Nigeria Is Not Serious About Fighting Corruptiton

Every serious country punishes corruption, smuggling and money luandery severely. What is 25% of the undeclared sum compared to the damage they cause through capital flight? Have we seen how much the US fined UBS? Billions of dollars. But because it is the same people benefiting from these activities that are designing the laws (either by themselves or through their criminal associates in the House of 'Representathieves' and 'Sinate')you get a weak leglislation because the interest being protected is not Nigeria's but of some individuals. I weep for this country.

think well b4.......

Oleku. hmmmmm. can u please do more research and see where the problems of this our country lies?

Nigerians First

Dear Justice Okeke, what does this mean: Justice Okeke accordingly convicted the accused and ordered that they forfeit $25,310 (Twenty Five Thousand Three Hundred and Ten Dollars), being 25% of the undeclared sum to the Federal Government of Nigeria.
I pity this country because of Justice like this. Which government of Nigeria's account will this money go to?

If this guys have worked for their money and decided to hand carry it, let them go.
It has been the way Nigerian government laid the beds off this country.
What about the Nigerian leaders that do commit same crime and nothing is being done? So, let us sanitize our selves first.

just that? Submit d money to

just that? Submit d money to d federal republic of nigeria? Whc investigation was carried out on dis people? Where do they work? Where is d large sum of money coming? OMG tears running dwn my cheek and 2moro they would come nd commit d same offence again nd go scot free. May God have mercy

What a useless and inconclusive report

Poorly written and gives no conclusive information.
Nigerian pepper soup joint journalism!

Where is the beef?

Where in the world are these people getting this kind of money from? The masses are crying that there is no money in the economy and yet you hear about people taking a large sum of money out of the country. Can someone please educate me because I'm going crazy trying to figure out our reasoning in that country.
Whatever happen to sending money through the banking system?

Sums not adding up

Not sure I understand this story clearly but could SR please clarify what total was the 25% forfeiture charged against because $25,310 is definitely not of $2MM?

Na today?

E don te wey Lebanese and Indians don dey f-ck mama Nigeria for every orifice. People wey run come Naija as refugees don become proper shons-of-the-soil. Same story all over West Africa. Second base jare!

Larkys Of Nigerian Politicians

SultanofSokoto (I'm sure that is not your real name)
You should be careful of your postulations. What evidence do you have that these Lebanese were used by Northern Politicians. If you had said politicians, I would have agreed with you though!

@ Sultanof Sokoto

Boy you are very hilarious, keep on trucking I like your style.

Naija don finish

See what the mallams with their arab masters have turned Nigeria to. The other day i met one here telling me Nigeria is the greatest country on earth and that with a big fat grin,though not a violent person by nature, was about to punch the living day light out of him but decided to save it for the first mallam i meet whenever i come back to naija. I sincerely hope it will not get to that cos the "one Nigeria" will and must crumble SOONEST.

They are Mohammed boys

They most be released because they are arabs and Mohammed boys that hausa and fulani worship twenty four hours. Southerns, can any Nigerians do this in Saudi, Iran or any arab countries and go free?
Saudi would have executed them. But because we do not have government in Nigeria, these people are allowed to steal our oil money to Mohammed. Even though these peole don't like blacks, they are allowed to destroy Nigeria through northern muslims. As long as we still remain with the north, Nigerian will never grow. Arabs are their gods

Tinubu errand boys...

They were moving the money to Beirut on behalf of Tinubu and his ACN allies. Yorubas don finish our oil money. SE oil wealth is now being taken to various foreign banks abroad, thats why them they insist on one naija. This is unacceptable. Divide we must.

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